Episode 387: Bananas and Politics

March 7, 2009
Listen: Bananas and Politics

This week it's a different look at the seemingly simple and innocent banana. It's played a role in building regimes, toppling governments, partnering with the CIA and even gave Elvis his legendary grilled peanut butter and banana sandwich. Our guest is Dan Koeppel, author of Banana: The Fate of the Fruit that Changed the World.

The Sterns have found five-star Mexican food at Rosita's in the small Great Plains town of Scottsbluff, Nebraska.

Sally Schneider is back talking savory ideas for lemons. Try her recipe for Risotto with Dry Sherry and Lemon from her book, The Improvisational Cook.

Reporter Guy Hand tells of the morphing of the tater tot. From the ridiculous to the sublime, it's the story of what happened to those crispy little nuggets that started out as cattle feed in the Pacific Northwest and ended up in trendy bars all across America.

Lynne and Christopher Kimball of Cook's Illustrated fame play another round of Stump the Cook with Chris from St. Louis.

Professor Jessica Harris, the first scholar-in-residence to hold the chair endowed by Ray Charles at Dillard University, talks about the musician's great generosity, how he loved to eat, and his support of African-American culture.

Broadcast dates for this episode:

  • March 15, 2008 (originally aired)

  • March 7, 2009 (rebroadcast)